Category Archives: self-help

Taking responsibility for your actions by way of monitoring your thoughts empowers you to overcome ANYTHING in your life!

New Perspective

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One of the ways that I and my clients gain a fresh look on things is through breathing into the heart space.  Think about it.  Do you actually notice when you step into Tunnel Vision Land?  The land where your vision is narrowed and all you’re seeing is what is wrong, what’s not working and all the things you aren’t, don’t have or aren’t getting.  The land where you drop your inherent, innate power at the gate and become this helpless victim needing to be saved.  You are not that!  You are not really in that space, although it may deeply and intensely feel like it.  In reality, we most often slip through that gate unconsciously.  That’s why a new perspective is so valuable!!

I use the analogy of the soldier who is stuck in the foxhole and doesn’t know the battle/war is over.  So s/he keeps the energy around fighting up; staying stuck in the fear and anxiety of it all.  Perspective is everything!

What if the war is over?  The war against yourself, your family, your boss and all that’s wrong with the world?  What if you actually do have peace around you, but you can’t see it?  What if getting into your heart and giving yourself all of this loving attention opens the gate to seeing your life in an entirely new way?  What else is possible?

Is this something you’d like to experience?  Not sure and maybe want to dip your toe into the water a bit?  I’m now offering telephonic coaching and energy healing.  Please refer to the Coaching page for more information and share the information with those whom you think would enjoy connecting with me.

I’ve always said that there is a reason that there are billions of us on the planet instead of just ONE.  It’s because we need each other–for a variety of reasons–but importantly to be mirrors for one another.  We need a new perspective on things sometimes.  During your sessions, whether in person or telephonic, I’m holding a space of unconditional love for you and mirroring that for you so that you can receive the healing you need, which comes from your own heart.  That’s why we breathe into the heart space during Rebirthing Breathwork.  So, by holding this space, you are able to ratchet up your vibration, your energetic state of awareness, and see yourself and your life in a sweet new way.  OMG!  This is so helpful!  For me, it allowed so much compassion to come forth in my relationships!  I could really detach from the story of drama and allow it be as it is without judgment.

In this moment, if your circumstances allow, get into a comfortable position.  Close your eyes, put your hand on your heart and breathe into that space 3 times.  Really focus on the in breath and the out breath.  You could use an affirmation statement like “I breathe in life”, “I breathe out fear”, “I am safe”, “I breathe out stress”, or create your own.  Try it and let me know how it goes for you!!

If you haven’t already connected to me on Facebook, please do!  I have two ways of connecting: Dr.Michelle Mollard and What Would Love Do.

Loving You!

Dr. Michelle

Breathe and Release

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The gift of doing this conscious connected breathing is so powerful!  Each time you do it, you release exactly what you need to in that moment and go on to experience a lighter state of being.  Ahhhh…can’t you just feel the peace now?

What is Rebirthing?

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[Breathwork was originally and often called Rebirthing]

This is a very good and thorough article I thought you might like from Deike Begg, Rebirther and Rebirthing Trainer, Psycotherapist, Author of Rebirthing-Freedom from Your Past, and Astrologer based in London.

Rebirthing is about rebirth of the soul. In Rebirthing you are taught how to consciously connect to your soul by connecting with spiritual energy and drawing it inside yourself with the breath. The effects of this are immediate and permanent. Every little step of progress is irreversible and every little step is an initiation for the soul.

Essentially, Rebirthing is a breathing therapy in which you consciously connect to the divine power of the universe so that it will cleanse and transform you. It is not first and foremost concerned with the birth process and reliving the birth trauma. There are many people who have never experienced a rebirth in that sense during their sessions.

The Rebirthing process itself is based on a very specific advanced breathing technique. Developed in the early 1970s, mainly by the American Leonard Orr, it can have the most amazing results physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Although it is safe to practice and powerfully life-enhancing, you should not attempt to do it on your own at first. The changes that could occur during a session including variations in body temperature and strange feelings and visions, for instance need to be facilitated by a trained practitioner in order to provide you with the fullest benefits and lead you through to the final high point when you can experience your own bliss, inner light and union with a greater whole.

There are many misconceptions concerning Rebirthing. It is not a form of hyperventilation, quite the opposite in fact; nor is it primarily a form of relaxation. We don’t smother people with pillows or restrain them in any way. The individual lies down on a mattress and will breathe in a certain way for about an hour. During this time the most extraordinary things can happen.

We must remember that we exhale approximately 70% of body waste. Only 3% is discarded by defecation, 7% by urination and 20% through the skin. This means that during a session of deep Rebirthing, when we breathe in a certain way, and when the breath reaches deeper into our cellular structure than anything else we know, a profound cleansing of our being takes place. One belief is that we store memory (of traumas, accidents, shame etc) in the body as chemicals and when these get released through the cleansing breath they leave the body and can no longer affect us in negative ways. So in that sense after each Rebirth one is a different person. Although Rebirthing is not a quick fix, because you need to do the breathing, which can stir up all kinds of blockages, it is the fastest working therapy I know.

How I Developed My Rebirthing Work

My Rebirthing work developed out of my rich psychotherapeutic training background, with a sound grounding in Psychosynthesis, Jungian psychology, Gestalt therapy with its emphasis on voice dialogue, past-life therapy and astrology. For 17 out of the past 26 years I have undergone various types of psychotherapy myself. They were an adventurous journey and a wonderful opportunity for self-discovery. (Psychotherapy is not to be confused with psychiatric treatment, which often only employs the use of drugs.)

I particularly took to guided imagery and Gestalt therapy. In guided imagery a person is taken on an inner journey, for instance up to a mountain top where they might meet their Higher Self in the form of a wise being, or into a cave deep within the bowels of the Earth to encounter a lost and perhaps long-forgotten fragment of themselves. Guided imagery, properly used, effectively employs the imagination to access memory. But on its own, without conscious connected breathing (the Rebirthing breath), it cannot bring about the physical cleansing process of the cells nor the brilliant and supernatural visionary experiences encountered in Rebirthing.

Gestalt therapy also uses the body as a sounding board and as a link to hidden fragments of ourselves, but here the eyes are generally kept open and one experiences oneself as one is in the very moment of therapy. It is a ‘here and now’ therapy. Much attention is given to body language, quality and tone of voice, tightness of muscles, etc., and the client is encouraged to go along with the fantasy they are having in the here and now and to act it out in the session. The therapist then guides the client, through various techniques to discover that all his or her conflicts rest somewhere within their own nature, and gradually, psychic contents that were previously disowned and projected onto other people, are re-owned and subsequently integrated.

My Rebirthing technique rests on the shoulders of these two therapies because both are ideally suited for use for breath work. Without their deeper dimensions breathing therapy can be shallow, meaningless and dull.

It is also important, if one wants to work in this meaningful way with the breath, to have an understanding of other cultures, of mythology, fairy tales and astrology. The imagery that can emerge during sessions is often of an archetypal (collective) nature, belonging to ancestral or racial memory and frequently of cosmic dimensions. It is a region diametrically opposed to our ordinary conscious world, a region that is inhabited by strange beings, shapes, colours and lights. It is useful for the Rebirthing therapist therefore to know, for instance, that a snake is a symbol of wisdom, as well as a frightening image for some; that a spider, as Maya, is also the great celestial spinner of illusion and fate, even for those with a spider phobia.

During Rebirthing people frequently see images of various planets, stars and constellations, and knowledge of astrology can be invaluable for the practitioner. The birth chart not only tells me much about a person’s character, but also reveals the current cosmic conditions with which they need to co-operate. It can tell me whether a person is about to have a nervous breakdown or a spiritual emergence. It is interesting how many people come to Rebirthing when their birth charts are ‘activated’ by one of the outer planets, i.e., Uranus(sudden, unexpected changes), Neptune (dissolution of former way of being, sacrifice and renunciation) or Pluto (death and rebirth and empowerment). Certain planets promote a rapid Rebirth, others indicate that major blocks to the flow of energy to and from the soul exist and need to be dealt with and dissolved. This might take two or more sessions.

The bodywork of Gestalt therapy has proved immensely helpful during breathing sessions, whilst guided imagery not only makes it a joy to work with people’s emerging stories but also enables me to guide them more deeply into their inner worlds. And my work with sub-personalities (different aspects of ourselves that co-exist within us) greatly facilitates the process of integration of different parts of one’s being.

Your Journey

With Rebirthing breathing you enter totally new territory, a terra incognita. You find yourself in the strangest lands and circumstances. Whilst you will not lose your connection with the world you live in here and now, you can at the same time have experiences of another world, a different dimension and time. The ‘trick’ in Rebirthing is to allow yourself to dwell in that unknown world for long enough for a transformation to occur. That world lies in what Deepak Chopra in his book Quantum Healing calls the ‘gap’. In this gap creativity, inspiration, super-intelligence and supernatural visions have their abode.

You would not set out on a journey through unknown terrain without a map or a guide. It would be foolish to start out on your own without someone who knows what lies ahead, knows the road and knows how (but not where) it might end. The same applies to Rebirthing; you need a skilled guide to help you over tricky hurdles and to hold your hand or encourage you when you feel stuck or think you cannot go on. It is the consciousness that we bring to breath work that is the determining factor. Also, during the first few sessions you may need a great deal of encouragement just to keep breathing, for if you don’t breathe properly nothing will happen. After several years of Rebirthing I still prefer to do my breathing with someone else present, if only to keep me breathing and from dropping off to sleep. If you are willing to do the work, to breathe as never before and trust the transformative powers of the breath, you will make contact with universal forces.

The Buddha taught that conscious inhalation and exhalation leads eventually to the knowledge of liberation. When we breathe consciously we become aware of that which is normally unconscious. If we change the rhythm of our breathing we change our minds and the way to change the rhythm is to give conscious attention to breathing. When we give attention to breathing and rhythm we transform air into magical essence.

In order to get the best out of a Rebirthing session you will need to suspend your disbelief in a force greater than yourself. You will need to remain open to the incoming breath, keep breathing calmly and ‘wait upon the will of heaven’. If you breathe, relax and allow things to happen, rather than trying to control them, you will have a Rebirth. You will come to a natural end of the breathing cycle when you either open your eyes spontaneously or drift into a gentle ‘yoga’ sleep, but before that you will have had one of the most astonishing experiences ever.

Sometimes the most amazing images of brilliant colours and patterns appear before your inner vision. Sometimes there is a very bright light, so bright that it ought to hurt your eyes but doesn’t. Sometimes your whole body can feel as if it has become infused with this light, causing you to lose all sense of normal bodily awareness. (You have probably heard and read much about the divine light. Well, this is the only way I have ever been able to ‘be in the light’ and to have the light enter me.) Sometimes a numinous figure, a wise or even Christ-like being appears. Aldus Huxley, in The Doors of Perception, talks about similar experiences but with the help of hallucinogenic drugs, and puts it like this:

“Sometimes people see visions, which may be of Christ Himself. Sometimes they hear the voice of the Great Spirit. Sometimes they become aware of the presence of God and of those personal shortcomings which must be corrected if they are to do His will.”

For some of you what I have been talking about here is familiar, but for those who have not yet had an experience of entering that other dimension all this will have little meaning. I do hope, however, to have aroused sufficient curiosity for people to experiment, if possible, with a skilled Rebirther who has already visited transpersonal realms.

Deike Begg, D.F.Astrol.S, Dip.Psych.&Ed, UKCP, FAPAI, APAI

http://www.deikebegg.com

Breath Language

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As long as we are still alive, the way we are breathing right now is the right way for us right now, and we can learn from it!

As the freedom of our breath is restrained by the experiences we have repressed, our breath is teaching us about our state of consciousness.

Breath is a language that expresses itself through the location of the breath in the body, breathing sounds, and breath rhythms.  For example, when the breath is rapid and high in the chest, it is frequently communicating about grief and fear; when in the middle of the chest, it is about anger, when pulled into the belly in a ceratin way, it tells about feelings pushed away as far as possible.

Our breath language tells us when we are “activated”. In life, and in breathwork sessions, we are activated when our repressed experiences and their related suffering are brought to consciousness and we think and react under their influence rather than behaving autonomously.

A breathwork session will activate past suffering and bring it to consciousness for integration.  The breather arrives at insight into the cause of the problem at vision with regard to its solution.  Breathwork sessions may be individual, accompanied by a professional breathworker, or take place in groups led by professional breathworkers.

The pattern of a breathwork session is ACTIVATION, INTEGRATION, INSIGHT, VISION. This pattern can be repeated several times during the same session.

At the end of a breathwork session, once the breath has done its work, it is likely to completely fill our physical body and our energy bodies.  Then we breathe in from below our feet, take our breath above our head, and let it go like a wave, down to below our feet.  This breath is about transcendental harmony.

by Joy Manne, from her book “Conscious Breathing”.

New Zealand Article on Health Benefits of Rebirthing

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Rebirthing, as a natural therapy, has powerful application as a tool of spiritual healing, and has helped hundreds of thousands of people worldwide to improve their health, even as far as overcoming medically incurable conditions.

Technically, Rebirthing is a form of prana yoga, or air-based spiritual purification, which happens to have developed indigenously within the western world.

Even if you don’t currently suffer from ill-health, Rebirthing can give you much more personal energy, boost your sense of aliveness, and improve your resistances to common diseases such as colds and flu.

We as rebirthers work from the point of view that people’s mental, emotional and spiritual states have an enormous influence on the health of the physical body, and we use many of the tools of metaphysical healers such as Louise Hay in our work with clients.

From our perspective, society pressures individuals into keeping most of their emotional pain suppressed, akin to households in a strange town being told not to put their rubbish out on the street for collection. In such households, the rubbish accumulates and rots within the house, eventually making the house unliveable. The same is true of the human body if we don’t practise good habits of emotional and spiritual hygeine.

For years, we have seen people’s health improve after they rid their bodies of years of emotional blockage. In our view, the subconscious effort of keeping emotional blockages suppressed puts enormous strain on the body’s systems, especially the immune system. When these blockages are released, the body has more resources available with which to combat illness, even repair and regenerate damaged organs and tissues.

One startling example of this was a physician in the South Island of New Zealand who was dying of non-Hodgkins lymphatic cancer. Before rebirthing, this poor man was devastated by the condition. I (Pauline Avis McNab) reached out to him. Within five weeks of his first Rebirthing session, he recorded clear bone marrow tests, clear blood tests and clear CT scans – a complete absence of the condition which was otherwise sending him quickly to an early grave. To this doctor’s credit, he did comply with all of the requirements of my healing programme, including frequent private sessions, weekly group session and attendance on my practitioner training course. In this time, he had numerous dry and water rebirthing sessions. This healing was featured on a nationwide TV documentary

(New Zealand, November 1991, Paul Holmes Show, TV1)

Rebirthing founder Leonard Orr, on that same TV documentary, said that he knew of “many thousands of cancer cases, and many hundreds of AIDS cases” that had cleared up completely where Rebirthing was the main or only healing process used.

To us, healing of any physical condition is a mundane natural occurence which takes place automatically when people release the underlying emotional pain which has caused this condition. Such pain may be triggered by traumatic events in adult life — and/or, it will likely have roots much earlier in life, even as far back as a person’s birth and time in the womb!

Rebirther Sondra Ray observed that, while a nurse, a large number of her oncology ward patients had suffered a major emotional upset within the year prior to their cancer diagnosis

One thing we must stress is that healing is a journey for each individual. The wonderful tool of Rebirthing, while enormously powerful, is not enough in itself to bring about automatic healing. There are two other essential components:

  • The willingness of the client to follow all instructions given, to feel all of their feelings, and be willing to accept deep and fundamental changes in their inner and outer life, and
  • The supportive presence – the clear and empathetic vibration of the practitioner(s); many clients report that they had been partly aware of given emotional blockages, but could not have released them save for the supportive vibration of their therapists.

Some (but not all) rebirthers possess this supportive vibration to a level which can facilitate the healing of medically incurable illness. Attaining and maintaining this healing vibration is a demanding process which requires rebirthers to rebirth themselves frequently, to practise this and many other spiritual purification techniques on an ongoing basis, and maintain a level of relative isolation from mainstream society. We at Rebirthing New Zealand work hard on ourselves each and every day. From this discipline, we have been able to facilitate many otherwise medically impossible healings.

One last thing we must stress on the subject of healing of ‘physical’ conditions (and we put the word ‘physical’ in quotes, because we see all so-called ‘physical’ illness as mental/emotional/spiritual illness accompanied by bodily symptoms):

You cannot change and stay the same!

If there’s something wrong in your body, then a priori there’s something wrong in your (past and/or present) life. If there’s anything in your life you are unwilling to let go of – whether it be place of residence, relationships, job, career, lifestyle – your healing prospects could be cruelly limited.

In all the successful healings we’ve seen, people have been willing to let go of everything – marriages, financial assets, jobs, everything – but after the healing, they in effect have not had to give up much at all, except for their dysfunctional relationship with themselves, others and the world around them. They have even kept their money, but enjoyed it a whole lot more with a whole new perspective on life.

If you are looking towards Rebirthing as a healing option, you can maximise your chances by being as frankly honest about yourself and your life as possible. Through your healing journey, you can expect many of your perspectives on life to change dramatically, as you head into a reality of emotional lightness, personal freedom, mental clarity and spiritual empowerment.

http://www.rebirthing.co.nz/benefits/health

Words from Breathwork’s Founder

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Intelligent Energy

by Leonard Orr

Energy becomes what it thinks about. This is the most basic truth about Life. If you really understand these words, you are spiritually enlightened. Energy becomes what it thinks about. Energy is the Source of all things. Energy is Infinite Being, the Eternal Spirit; Energy is Substance. Energy is God. But Energy is evenly distributed throughout space and time. It just exists and doesn’t do anything. Energy just is! However, thinking is a quality of Energy and moves Energy. When Energy becomes impregnated by thought, Energy organizes Itself into the form directed by the thought – which may be a physical thing. Energy naturally becomes what it thinks about. Energy directed by thought can materialize into physical things, social realities, or personal feelings and spiritual abilities. There is only one Energy in the universe, but there can be any number of thinking centers of this energy. All thinkers share the same Energy. We are all activity centers in the same Energy. We are thinking centers in the same One Being. We create our own reality, we share the reality which others create, and we become aware of the reality which the Ultimate Thinking Center of Energy has created. We usually call it Nature or God. We are the director of this Energy and so is everyone else, but there is a greater original Creator who has created a very big universe for us to play in. We each create our own reality within this big game and we try to successfully interact with the Big Creator and other people’s creation, but we also have, given to us by our family tradition and conditioning from our parents, a whole package of created things. To the extent that we are recreating our parents’ reality, we have to learn to choose it or un-create it in order to be free. We begin absorbing our parents feelings, thoughts, and manifested realities when we are in the womb. By the time we become enlightened and accept our creative power, we have a whole repertoire of feelings, beliefs, habits, and realities to work with. We can stay stuck with them or we can change them. To heal the emotional mind we received from our family is called spiritual liberation. This seems to take a lifetime for people to successfully do, but we cannot succeed at all if we do not start the process of self healing. And our chances of success are determined by the quality of principles and practices which we use.

Thought

We begin by passing judgement upon each thought as it flows through our consciousness. Selecting a mantra and working with it constantly is the perhaps the most efficiently way to upgrade the quality of our thoughts and feelings. A good mantra should focus our Energy on the realization of our natural divinity. It will liberate us from negative thoughts, feelings, and realities. It will enable us to create what we like and consciously choose. It will make it easier to master our life. We can also upgrade the quality of our thoughts by studying the great Scriptures like the Bhagavad Gita, the Bible, The Devi Bhagavatam, and especially the Shiva Purana which is the most complete picture of human divine potential as well as inspiration and practices to achieve it.

Water

Bathing twice per day cleans the energy body which is our mind in action. Daily bathing is an infinitely valuable spiritually powerful practice. We cannot survive in this world with all kinds of “energies” flying around us every day without the spiritual purification practice of daily bathing. Without bathing, we become more polluted and our body becomes stiffer until we can no longer function in this world and we die to get out of the world. Water purification keeps us alive. It makes Life more pleasurable and gives us greater power and mastery. Drinking good water is also water purification.

Earth

Diet is also important. The lighter food we eat, the more Life Energy we have. The human body and energy system was not designed to process meat according to the oldest Scriptures – The Shiva Purana – as well as modern science. The popular practice of eating meat kills more people than alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs combined. Having a personal exercise system is also important. And having a career that we love and enables us to win the money game is also a part of earth mastery. Receiving body massages and listening to good music are also earth disciplines.

Air

We have to learn the ability to breathe energy as well as air. Intuitive energy breathing, often called Rebirthing, is one of the most important skills of spiritual liberation.

Fire

Fire purification is also very important. Water, Earth, Air, and Fire are the eternal qualities of this Infinite Energy. Learning the spiritual power of fire and using it on a daily basis is a healing practice that is essential to human health and aliveness. Fire purification keeps us alive. Fire can clean our energy body and help us maintain our physical body in health and joy. Fire can burn pain, tension, and disease out of the body. Exposure to an open flame is as important to human health as good food, exercise, energy breathing, daily bathing, and wholesome thoughts. Fire is magical and powerful. Fire is a physical quality of God that can clean us and heal us spiritually and physically.

Love

Love is also essential. Love is the subjective experience of Infinite Energy. To the extent that we feel love, we are tuned into our Divine Energy. Intelligent Energy creates with mind, earth, air, water, fire, and love. The basic idea of spiritual purification is to clean and balance our energy body often enough to keep it in joy and good working order so we can enjoy Life – so that we can embody and express this Infinite Energy in the world. Energy become what it thinks about. To the extent that we do daily spiritual practices with mind, water, earth, air, fire, and love, we move steadily on the path of spiritual liberation, personal freedom and power, and aliveness. To the extent that we neglect these fundamental qualities of our divine nature, we increase our emotional mud and lose our health and aliveness, our peace and joy of living. Without spiritual purification practices, our life urge becomes weaker, more dense, filled with darkness, and living becomes more difficult. Our body gets stiffer and stiffer. Religions that are not focused upon spiritual purification practices produce dead people. Without spiritual purification, people become sick and stiff like zombies. These dead zombies spread emotional energy pollution, sickness, and death to everyone they contact. Understanding these ideas is basic to living as Intelligent Energy. Energy is love and bliss and power. This Intelligent Energy has thought itself into earth, air, water, and fire. The Life of the universe as well as the human body is the intelligent and loving interplay between earth, air, water, and fire. From the standpoint of human existence, earth, air, water, and fire are the eternal qualities of God. Earth, air, water, and fire have to exist before you an have a human body as we know it. Therefore earth, air, water, and fire precede human beings. To have a conscious relationship to earth, air, water, and fire through simple daily spiritual practices with them is basic to realizing our potential as Intelligent Energy. I give you these fundamental thoughts out of love. For more information on these ideas, check out my books and tapes. I also give personal consultations over the phone as well as lectures, or trainings. You are invited to contact me at the following address or phone number:

Leonard Orr,
PO Box 1026,
Staunton, VA 24402,
USA phone: (+1) (540) 885-0551/fax -1230.

To go deeper into the subject of this article, here is a list of recommended titles:

  • Breaking the Death Habit – by Leonard Orr
  • Breath Awareness – by Leonard Orr
  • Fire – by Leonard Orr
  • The Healing Manual – by Leonard Orr
  • Adventures in Spiritual Mastery (CD) – by Leonard Orr
  • Personal Energy Management – by Leonard Orr
  • The Science of Personal Aliveness (tape) – by Leonard Orr
  • Ultimate Healers (tape) – by Leonard Orr
  • The Psychology & Enlightenment of Leonard Orr (tape) – by Leonard Orr
  • Ye are Gods – by Analee Skarin

Leonard Orr’s books & tapes as well as a selection of other very valuable materials are available for sale on this web site. Information about the Leonard Orr Training Center is available on this web site.

 

Enjoy This Inspiring Article!

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Finding Innovation Inspiration – By Darcy Eikenberg

Let’s pause for a moment to celebrate three unique innovators who died this year: Curtis Allina, Art Clokey, and Walter Morrison.

What–you haven’t heard of them? I bet you know their creations well: Pez, Gumby, and Frisbee.

I dare you not to grin when saying those three words! Pez, Gumby, and Frisbee collectively represent fun, silliness, play, and many more happy emotions we want in our lives today.

When each of these gentlemen’s obituaries appeared within a month of each other, it made me pause. What lessons did their innovations teach? As I strive to be more creative and innovative, what inspiration can I take from their journeys? After exploring their lives and legacies further, here are the top three things I discovered:

1. Great Innovation Can Happen Even if Life’s Hard

You’d think that if you were a master of something as creative, as inventive, as FUN as any of these three playthings, that you probably lived a charmed life. But that was far from the truth:

• Clokey was sent to live in a children’s home when his mom’s new husband rejected him after his natural father died in a car accident.

• Allina’s family perished in concentration camps in the 40s, leaving him as the sole survivor.

• Morrison, a WWII pilot, was shot down and spent 48 days as a prisoner of war in Stalag 13.

Those setbacks didn’t get in their way–in fact, they may have led to even greater creativity and innovation. For example, Morrison’s aeronautic skills helped him refine his original flying disc. The abandoned Clokey was eventually adopted by a well-known composer who introduced him to an artistic life that certainly led him to pick up a handful of clay.

2. Accept Whatever Comes
Gumby’s 1956 debut on “The Howdy Doody Show” led the stop-motion character to his own short-lived series and ongoing syndication. But his popularity faded in the 70’s, and creator Clokey struggled financially, according to published accounts.

Then a young comedian named Eddie Murphy played a foul-talking Gumby on Saturday Night Live in the 80’s. Many expected Clokey–the man who created TV’s religious-toned “Davey and Goliath” and who once planned to become an Episcopal priest–to be shocked and ashamed at how his creation was mangled.

But according to interviews, he loved it, although he was happy it was on late at night when children were sleeping (remember, this was the pre-TiVo era.) By accepting someone else’s interpretation and going with the affectionate outpouring, the edgy performance rejuvenated Gumby, and put the green guy in the hands of a whole new generation.

3. You Don’t Have to Create to be Creative

Pez was originally a Viennese mint, marketed to adults as an alternative to smoking. In fact, the stemmed dispenser was designed to look like a cigarette lighter. When the idea emerged to repackage the candy for children, company exec Allina had to persuade the conservative, European home office that the change would make sense.

Pez historian (now there’s a job!) David Welch told The New York Times that no one really knows exactly whose idea it was to put heads on Pez dispensers. However, Welch shared, “The idea came from the United States. And for the idea to have come out of the United States and made it to Austria where it could be approved, Allina was the only guy who could have made that happen.”

So whether Allina actually envisioned a Santa head on a stack of peppermints, we’ll never know. But he was the one to enable the creative move, to actually make it happen, and in the end, is credited with making the now multi-million dollar industry come to life. Not a bad legacy.

Speaking of legacy, it is worth noting one other thing these three men had in common. They all lived long lives: Pez’s Allina passed away at 87. Gumby animator Clokey died at 88; and Morrison, Frisbee’s father, died at 90. They left behind not only their respective innovations, but also buckets of inspiration for the creative spirit in all of us.

Where do you find your innovation inspiration–at work, outdoors, or at home in your garage? From music, TV, or a stroll through the mall? Who inspires you most–people you know well, or people you’ve only known from afar?

** To comment on this article or to read comments about this article,
go here.

About the Author:

Darcy Eikenberg, ACC, is an accomplished coach, consultant and business leader, with experience motivating individual and team behavior to achieve business results. Her focus is coaching and mentoring aspiring individuals and professionals/teams needing guidance and support. Before founding Coach Darcy LLC, Darcy was Principal, Internal Coach, and Senior Communication Consultant at Hewitt Associates. Darcy is VP, Marketing for the Georgia Coach Association and a graduate of Northwestern University.